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ivatt

Lowest Spec PC for FSX

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I recently posted a thread about upgrading my video card on my old PC to improve FSX Gold performance.

 

From information since gained I have had to accept that it is not viable to make any hardware change as the basic machine just isn't good enough.

 

In the light of that I have started to think of buying a used gaming PC as a replacement. I have seen several topics about this and seen that it is suggested that  a big case with a quad core intel 5 and GTX460 graphics card or higher plus a PSU of at least 650 watts and some good DDR3 Ram of at least 1600Mhz CL9 would be good.

 

Unfortunately after looking at eBay etc. the cost of an intel i5 machine is above the limit I would like to pay just for the occasional FSX experience (i am not a dedicated user). Most I have seen on the UK site (I am based in the UK) are anything between £GP400 and £GBP500. There are some refurbished gaming PCs from £350 plus but the spec on these isn't always brilliant and I don't have the knowledge to compareg good from bad. Some for example only have 350W PSU which seem very low, even my old machine has a 500W PSU which I suppose I could transfer if everything else was OK..

 

I would welcome any comments as to the minimum spec I would need to be able to have an enjoyable FSX experience so that I can look for used machines at a lower cost. Ideally I would like to keep the cost down below £GBP200-225, or am I being unrealistic?

 

Many thanks

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Possibly a better explanation of "Enjoyable FSX experience" is in order.  I have a very enjoyable experience on

 

a 2 GHZ CPU-2GB memory AMD with NVidia Graphics.  I have tons of addon aircraft and photo-real

 

scenery (All freeware no payware).  Around any major airport I have loads of AI and it definitely decreases

 

the FPS.  If you enjoy the "Eye Candy" like payware aircraft, ORBX scenery, REX weather and clouds

 

you will need something like 3.5 GHZ processor or above.

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Hi, thanks for the reply.

 

Could you perhaps expand the details on your cpu and grahics so I get a better idea of what to look for. From what you have written it does seem you can get a fair performance out of fsx without breaking the bank, which is exactly what I want it's just a question of know what to look out for.

 

I don't want to spend money unnecessarily. I have lost of freeware aircraft stored in my downloads folder that i used with my existing PC, which is faulty and slow. Not got into AI much.

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I'm running  AMD Sempron processor 3400+ 2.01 GHZ  1.87 GB Ram with NVIDIA GeForce 6100 video card. 

 

This system is about 12 years old and I paid $0.00 for it.  Definitely "Cheap at twice the price"! :dance:

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You don't need a supercomputer to run FSX so long as you do not have addon programs that add AI traffic, high definition scenery and textures, high definition weather and you keep the scenery complexity and autogen sliders on low end.  I started with sliders about midway, no addon scenery, AI ground traffic nearly non-existant and about 50% FSX stock air traffic and ran FSX reasonably well with a Core2Duo overclocked to 3.6 GHz and an Nvidia 8800GT.  It ran ok, but it did not have much visual appeal.  The more eye candy, the more AI traffic, the more addon airports, etc., the more robust the computer must be.

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I often smile when I read what some magazines and forums say is necessary for a good FSX experience. The previous responses are sensible and measured - I like to read that. But - are you sitting down - I'm running FSX:SE on a Pentium G630 @ 2.70GHz with 6.0 GB RAM and an NVIDIA GT520. You know what - it works. Sure, I sometimes get blurries on my FTX Global and big airports wont work but FTX Global/Vector with some Orbx and UK2000 airport scenery is great. I also fly hi-spec aircraft like iFly737Ng and RealAir Duke Turbine 2 - all run well. Occasionally, just occasionally, I have to pause the sim for 30 seconds to let the graphics catch up but that's not very often and I don't mind doing that if the alternative is to spend £1000's. I'd love to have a state-of-the-art system but its not my priority. As long as your spec gives you enjoyment then go for it. I've been simming for far too long since FS95 (says my wife) and have hundreds of hours in FSX and FSX:SE. So long as you enjoy it then your spec is fine. Hope you get something suitable that works for your budget.

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For four years I ran a fully loaded FSX, meaning PMDG planes, UTX, GEX, UT2, and tons of addon airports and photoscenery on an E8400 clocked at 3.85ghz, 2GB ram at 1033mhz, and a GTS250 1GB video card, and to be honest performance was very good. The bad part was that I was running on Win XP 32bit and had only 2gb of RAM, so when I would switch views, i5 would take a second for all the textures to fill in. Aside from that, I never had any FPS issues or OOMS. The main reason I built a new rig was just to go to a 64 bit OS and have more or faster ram.

 

Really, as long as you have at least a 2 or 4 core CPU clocked at 3.85ghz or more, relatively fast ram and a descent video card, you can get a pretty good FSX experience for not a lot of money invested.

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For four years I ran a fully loaded FSX, meaning PMDG planes, UTX, GEX, UT2, and tons of addon airports and photoscenery on an E8400 clocked at 3.85ghz, 2GB ram at 1033mhz, and a GTS250 1GB video card, and to be honest performance was very good. The bad part was that I was running on Win XP 32bit and had only 2gb of RAM, so when I would switch views, i5 would take a second for all the textures to fill in. Aside from that, I never had any FPS issues or OOMS. The main reason I built a new rig was just to go to a 64 bit OS and have more or faster ram.

 

Really, as long as you have at least a 2 or 4 core CPU clocked at 3.85ghz or more, relatively fast ram and a descent video card, you can get a pretty good FSX experience for not a lot of money invested.

Yep, with a Core2Quad 9650 overclocked to 3.8GHz, 4 GB of DDR2-800 RAM overclocked to 850, 7200RPM hard drives, and a 1GB Nvidia 560 Ti SOC card I can run FSX-Acceleration pretty well.  I limit the autogen to dense, scenery complexity to very dense, road traffic at 5%, boat traffic at 15%, UTX without 3D lights, Active Sky 2012 with only 3 layers of clouds, Ultimate Traffic 2 with 20%GA, 90% commercial traffic.  Textures are limited to 512x512 for most things, 1024x1024 for the aircraft I happen to be flying.  Is it a perfect simulation?  No, but it works well enough and it is paid for!

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